Pakistan PM Yousuf Raza Gilani dissolves cabinet, will downsize it

Gilani is now expected to form a smaller council of ministers.The ministers handed in their resignations during a cabinet meeting chaired by Gilani this afternoon.The Prime Minister then announced the dissolution of the cabinet in an address on television.

The government is also required to downsize the cabinet according to the provisions of a landmark constitutional reforms package passed last year.

The ruling Pakistan People's Party had last week authorised Prime Minister Gilani to dissolve his jumbo cabinet and form a smaller council of ministers amid demands for political reforms from the opposition and international donors.

The party's leadership authorised Gilani to appoint a smaller cabinet with fewer ministers who have "a reputation of integrity, competence and efficiency," the party had said.The PPP was facing pressure from the main opposition PML-N party and Western donors like the International Monetary Fund to reduce the size of the federal cabinet and to make significant cuts in government spending.

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